New Delhi, April 20: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said India has a constitution in which there is no place for disharmony and bitterness, but its chief architect B.R. Ambedkar faced social untouchability in his lifetime and political untouchability after his death.
In his remarks at the foundation stone ceremony of Dr Ambedkar International Centre here, Modi said Ambedkar stood for all of humanity and was a ray of hope for the marginalised and downtrodden sections of society.
He said Ambedkar faced intense social abuse in his life but did not allow his suffering to convert into any sense of revenge in the task of drafting the constitution. [Congress, BJP locked in tug-of-war over legacy of Dalit icon]
Modi said Ambedkar created great institutions such as the election commission and the finance commission.
Referring to his humble origins, Modi said he could not have got opportunity to serve as prime minister if there was no Ambedkar.
"Sometimes, I think at a personal level, if there had been no Babasaheb Ambedkar, where would have been Narendra Modi," he said.
He said Ambedkar represented a combination of "samata" (equality) and "mamata" (motherly love) which brought about "samrasta" (social harmony).
"He (Ambedkar) not only faced social untouchability but after his death had to face political untouchability. The country does not need social untouchability or political untouchability," Modi said.
Noting that the project for the Ambedkar Centre was conceived in 1992, Modi said he was distressed at the delay and his government has resolved to complete the work within 20 months.